How To Apply Tea Tree Oil To Reduce The Appearance Of Skin Tags

As you're flipping your hair into your favorite style, your fingers brush against a bit of protruding flesh. That little lump is a skin tag, and they typically grow on or around the groin, eyes, neck, and armpits (via the Mayo Clinic). The good news, though, is that skin tags are harmless. Still, while you can grab your keys and head to the pharmacy, the warnings on that little bottle of commercial skin tag remover might not be worth all the fuss. Consider ordering yourself a bottle of 100% pure tea tree oil instead. 

Coming from the Australian tea tree, tea tree oil is a yellowish oil that's great for adding to cleaners, using as hand sanitizer, and employing to repel insects. This natural substance has antifungal, antibacterial, and antiviral properties, and as such, it's a low-risk product to use on the skin, per Healthline. So, let's dive into the beautiful world of natural remedies for skin ailments to learn about tea tree oil's use as a skin tag remover.

Easy methods to use tea tree oil on skin tags

Skin tags aren't harmful, but they can be unsightly or uncomfortable, so many people prefer to get rid of them — like, yesterday. Tea tree oil can be a viable option even though scientific evidence doesn't currently prove that it's effective in getting rid of them — that is, beyond a study published in the scholarly journal Clinical Microbiology Reviews, which demonstrated that tea tree oil has dehydrating and antiviral qualities. 

While more research still needs to be done, TikTok users like holistic health creator Joy McCarthy have raved that it's a natural method to remove skin tags. To follow their lead, get a high-quality tea tree oil; many, like McCarthy, recommend investing in a "100% pure" option since you're applying it to your skin. After cleaning the area, add a drop of tea tree oil to a cotton swab, and apply it directly to the skin tag. If possible, try not to spread it on the skin around the skin tag. Do this up to three times a day, and within a few weeks, you'll notice the tag get smaller before falling off. You can tape a cotton swab soaked in tea tree oil on the area overnight, too.

While kissing your skin tag goodbye is fantastic, it's essential to make sure to get any suspicious or new skin tags checked by a doctor. Once clear, then zap it with tea tree oil. While this method is simple, it's always best to know the risks, too. 

Risks and benefits of using tea tree oil for skin tags

As far as essential oils go, tea tree is considered generally safe when used on the skin, according to the Mayo Clinic. But that doesn't mean that this oil doesn't come with any risks. The Mayo Clinic points out that skin irritation, stinging, and itching are possible side effects of tea tree oil treatment. It's also important to make sure it's never swallowed, as it's toxic when consumed.

Still, adding tea tree oil to your beauty routine shouldn't be too worrisome. In fact, this natural remedy has several benefits that go beyond just getting rid of skin tags. Tea tree oil is known to combat bacteria, fungi, and even viruses, which is why it's used for various ailments, including athlete's foot and acne (via Healthline). It's also known to speed up wound healing in the body by sending white blood cells into action and reducing inflammation. 

So, while tea tree oil might not have any scientific research to back up its skin tag removal claims, there's enough anecdotal evidence to suggest that this DIY remedy might be worth a shot. Just make sure to do a quick patch test, especially if you have sensitive skin, to ensure you don't have a reaction before going all out.